BMWs are a mixed bag, some people love them but others hate them. Despite the mixed reviews, the BMW is one of the most popular luxury cars in the world, and many car enthusiasts dream of driving one of these speed demons at some point in their lives.
There is a general misconception that BMWs are unreliable. There is more to it than just the fact that they are German, and to understand the reasons behind why people say that, you need to know about BMW’s reliability. In this article, I am going to answer why BMWs are considered unreliable. Read on.
BMWs are considered unreliable because they are more performance and luxury-oriented, make more money from parts, and have poor maintenance and care from owners, 6 cylinder BMWs are considered more reliable as opposed to their 4 cylinder counterparts.
Are BMWs Really Unreliable?
BMWs are generally reliable and but unlike most cars on the market, they require extra maintenance. Of cause when compared to Japanese vehicles like Toyota and Honda, BMWs are less reliable. It is also a fact that German cars are more expensive to maintain than their Japanese counterparts or even American-made vehicles.
But there is a reason for that. It is because German cars have more intricate engineering and higher quality parts (especially assembly parts) and offer great performance and luxury than most cars on the market. This fact alone makes them more expensive to maintain and it doesn’t matter if your car is a Mercedes-Benz or a Volkswagen.
It is true that some BMWs break down a lot and in most cases that are caused by the driver taking shortcuts, like replacing parts with low-quality components or not maintaining the vehicle properly.
But it is also true that BMWs as a brand have more than their fair share of things going wrong. And I’m not just talking about engine problems (especially the 4 cylinders), which are a common occurrence in almost all BMWs.
I’ll explain why some BMWs are unreliable, why many people perceive them as such, and how you can avoid your BMW breaking down.
Why are BMWs So Unreliable?
BMWs have always been a vehicle that was designed with performance in mind. This means that they push the limits of their car parts and components much further than regular cars do. This means that their parts will wear out faster than a normal car would and require replacement.
Make More Money on Parts:
All cars make more money on parts, but BMWs have always been especially notorious for this. For years they used a unique design for their four cylinders which made them extremely expensive to replace. They have since changed this, but they still make significantly more profit on parts than other companies do. This doesn’t necessarily mean BMWs make their cars unreliable intentionally to profit from parts.
Requires Quality Maintenance:
The BMW requires frequent and quality maintenance, which means that there are more chances for something to go wrong with it than there would be if you had a normal Japanese car.
BMWs also require more maintenance than most cars because they use more advanced technology. For example, they often use special oils and lubricants that are designed to provide better lubrication at higher temperatures and pressures.
You can’t just take your BMW anywhere, when you own one of these beasts, you need to ensure that maintenance and issues are fixed by reputable and certified dealers/auto repair shops to avoid problems with the car.
Negligence from Owners:
A BMW is a precision-engineered machine built for performance and handling at the expense of reliability and fuel economy. It should be maintained with care on top of normal maintenance. If you buy one, you should expect to have expensive problems that other cars don’t have
BMWs break down a lot because owners don’t do enough maintenance and car care. The old adage applies: you get what you pay for. BMWs are expensive to maintain, but the cost is significantly lower than the cost of owning an Aston Martin or a Bugatti.
Which BMW Engines are Less Reliable?
BMWs are known to make one the best 6-cylinder, v8, and diesel engines on the market but unfortunately the 4-cylinder engines (especially on older models pre-2014) are less reliable.
BMW engines are usually reliable but it is not without their faults. The BMW 4-cylinder engines are known to have issues with their timing chains and if not taken care of can cause catastrophic engine failure.
Some of the most common problems that we see with BMW 4 cylinders include 1. Timing chain guides breaking causing timing chain to rattle on cold start-up 2. Timing chains are very expensive to replace and labor is also very intensive taking roughly 25hrs for the complete engine strip down, disassembly and re-assembly
I would recommend staying away from their 4 cylinder models unless it was a recent model year with low mileage. They also have some transmission problems in their automatic cars, which is another reason why I recommend them only in recent years with low mileage.
Which BMW engines are More Reliable?
1. 6-Cylinder Engines
BMW 6-Cylinder Engines is one of the best (If not the best) engines by BMW. They Produce Incredible performance and power without compromising on reliability.
The six-cylinder engines of BMW are the most common ones. Most of them are reliable. Some of the issues which have been reported include bearing failures, oil leaks, and other types of leaks. However, most problems reported about these engines were caused by poor maintenance or incorrect repair procedures.
The best thing to do is to stick with the original engine, especially since there are many aftermarket options available in the market today. If you want to know more about BMW engines, then read on! Which BMW Engines Are More Reliable?
2. V8 Engines
BMW V8 engines are also very reliable. They have a few issues that should be mentioned though: they can get noisy when they age and they may leak oil if they are not maintained properly. Other than that, they have no particular problems that need to be addressed at this time.
3. Diesel Engines
BMW Diesel engines are more reliable. The reason is that BMWs have always been known for their longevity and this has not changed with the advent of diesel models. BMW’s diesel engines are not only reliable but also very powerful. They are able to produce more torque than gasoline engines of the same model and are known to last a very long time.
How to Make a Bmw More Reliable
- Service the car on time: Be sure to service your car according to the maintenance schedule in the owner’s manual. It will save you a lot of money in the long run.
- Perform Regular Maintenance: Even when you’re not servicing the car, perform regular maintenance that isn’t included in a service. For example, change your BMW engine oil every 6 months 6 000-10 000 miles, and replace your drive belts every 50 000- 90 000 miles (144 000 km). Also, it is very important to change your brake fluid every 2 years because it can absorb moisture over time.
- Don’t Ignore Gauges, Lights, or Alerts: If something is wrong with your car, there will be indicators on your dashboard or alerts in the instrument cluster that will let you know about it. Responding to them quickly will help prevent further damage. However, don’t panic if something goes wrong to take it to the nearest BMW auto repair/Dealer.
- Avoid engine mods: That includes intakes and chip upgrades. The M cars are built for power and can take it, but the non-M cars will not be happy with them. Mods will also void most of your warranty.
- Preventative maintenance is golden. It will save you money in the long run, as well as prevent having your car in the shop for weeks at a time while they try to figure out the problem.
BMWs still remain one of the best cars to drive if you are looking for luxury, performance, and incredible handling, Although some may argue that BMWs are less reliable than a car like a Toyota (which is probably true) BMWs are still reliable and can last you a long time if you take good care of it.